Much like their second meeting, Naito used a relentless grappling attack to defeat the Brazilian via unanimous decision in their strawweight mixed martial arts clash at ONE: ENTER THE DRAGON on Friday, 17 May in Singapore.
In a rubber match between former ONE Strawweight World Champions, Yoshitaka Naito clinches a unanimous decision victory over Alex Silva!Watch the full event on the ONE Super App ???? http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast
Posted by ONE Championship on Friday, May 17, 2019
It was a battle of positioning throughout the opening round.
The Japanese dynamo constantly threatened with takedowns, which forced Silva to defend and try to break free from his grasp.
“Little Rock” eventually reversed his rival’s grappling-heavy offense with an early kneebar attempt. Despite this, the Brazilian spent the majority of the five-minute session with his opponent latched onto him with a vice-like grip.
Naito’s strategy was quite apparent at the start of the second frame, as he immediately dove for his adversary’s legs once again.
This time around, the 35-year-old Paraestra Matsudo representative was finally able to secure a takedown, but Silva continued to battle back and eventually escaped with another leg lock attempt.
The submission attempt allowed the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt to get back to his feet, and he landed in top control during another grappling exchange. He tried to beat “Nobita” at his own game, but could not take advantage of the position.
Silva ratcheted up the pressure in the third and final stanza.
However, as time ticked away towards the end of the contest, Naito maintained his grappling dominance. He blanketed Silva and never gave his fellow former ONE Strawweight World Champion a moment to breathe.
Following three rounds of action, the judges awarded the Japanese dynamo the unanimous decision victory — his second consecutive victory over “Little Rock” in three total contests.
The win moved Naito’s professional mixed martial arts record to 14-3 and placed him back on the path towards the ONE Strawweight World Title.